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Documenting the Political Partying Circuit
From the early hours of the morning until late in the evening, politicians are partying. Sunlight's PARTY TIME can help you find out who is partying, where and when.


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2012 Elections • POSTED - 08.27.12 BY Keenan Steiner

Did AT&T rent out sprawling eatery to influence lawmakers all week?

When Tampa Bay Online reported a few weeks back that a lobbyist rented out a sprawling, upscale restaurant for the whole week of the Republican National Convention, they provided a host of details about the restaurant, the big tabs that the GOP high rollers would run up there from early breakfasts to late hour sessions, even the fact that the lobbyist had run the same kind of insiders dining club at the last three Republican conventions. But they were unable to find out the lobbyist’s name, or who he worked for.

That mystery has yet to be solved, but the lobbyist who rented out Jackson’s Bistro, according to details of some events that have spilled out in Tampa, has connections with telecom giant AT&T.

AT&T is sponsoring several events at the posh eatery, located on Harbour Island and featuring a prime view of the Tampy Bay Times Forum, the site of the convention. The Michigan delegation threw its kickoff party there Saturday night, which featured top state lawmakers. Guests at the event went home with a stuffed animal elephant with an AT&T logo, the Detroit News reported. AT&T also appears to be sponsoring an Illinois delegation event there on Tuesday afternoon. The Chicago Sun-Times reported that the telecom giant is sponsoring the event, and events lists show that the Illinois delegates will be at Jackson’s that afternoon.

Companies are throwing down millions of dollars to help pay for the $55 million program being put on by the GOP host committee in Tampa this week, which can accept unlimited contributions–the list of donors do not have to be reported to the Federal Election Commission until Oct. 15. But companies and lobbyists are also putting on and sponsoring outside events where executives can rub shoulders with members of Congress. There are at least around 200 such events going on this week, and plenty of revelry can be expected next week at Charlotte ’s Democratic convention as well. Party Time is tracking the events, and Sunlight is covering the convention on the ground and using Sunlight Live, covering the big convention speeches.

But a lot of the real political work at conventions happens away from the cameras and microphones and behind closed doors at private parties, where politicians rub elbows with the special interests that finance their campaigns.

Jackson’s Bistro is booked for private events through Thursday, a restaurant employee confirmed when called Monday. When asked about specific events or to confirm AT&T’s role, she said “we can’t release that information.”

An AT&T spokesman has not returned an email asking if the company rented the space.

The Tampa Bay Times previously reported that AT&T had rented the space, but it was not clear that they had done so for the entire week. Then a Tampa Bay Online reporter detailed the efforts by a lobbyist to book the space. The lobbyist visted Jackson’s year and a half ago. Six months ago, the lobbyist scouted it as a potential location. The owner, Gregory Stinson, wouldn’t tell Tampa Bay Online who the lobbyist was but said he his track record at past conventions persuaded him that closing his doors to all but the politically connected would be too lucrative an opportunity to pass up.

AT&T has reported more lobbying spending than any other telecom or tech company on lobbying this year, and the fifth most of any company or interest group–some $10.5 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. AT&T’s lobbying budget even tops a surging Google, which has built a high tech space (see below) at Tampa’s media center, where it plans to hold Google Hangouts on its social media platform, Google+. The company is the official livestream provider of the GOP convention, so it will be broadcasting speeches on YouTube.

Very cool google media center

Google is not commenting on how much it is spending to provide livestream and build the media area, but a spokesperson said the company is building another “innovation center” in Charlotte. On Thursday Google is partnering with the Young Gun Network, an outside group affiliated with Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., for a private event.

AT&T has been tilting toward the GOP: The contributions from AT&T’s PAC, employees and their family members to federal candidates total about $3 million for the 2012 cycle, with about two-thirds of the money going to Republican federal officeholders and candidates, according to CRP.

Only one corporate PAC has contributed more to Republicans in the 2012 cycle than AT&T: Honeywell. AT&T’s PAC is third overall this cycle; Eric Cantor’s Leadership PAC is the number one contributor.

Even though its lobbying effort to convince the Obama administration to approve a $39 merger with wireless operator T-Mobile approved failed late last year, its lobbying has shown no signs of abetting. Its influence budget this year topped last year’s.

In addition to its in-house lobbyists, it has employed 23 other firms or individual lobbyists this year, according to CRP. That leaves a lot lobbyists who might have rented Jackson’s Bistro on the telecom giant’s behalf.

This article was also posted on Sunlight’s Reporting Group blog.


GOP Women Raring for a Night of Partying

As you’ve already heard by now, the Republican Convention is taking place in Florida throughout the week, although some activities–including today’s schedule–have been disrupted by Tropical Storm Isaac. Party Time doesn’t know if the GOP’s ladies’ event that is supposed to take place tonight between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m. is included among the cancelled events, but in case it isn’t, here are the juicy deets:

RightNOW! , a volunteer group that focuses on women, along with View PAC, founded by GOP women, are hosting “The White House Party” today at the Honey Pot, a LBGT bar in Tampa’s Ybor City to “celebrate the power of political chicks”. Several female Republican lawmakers are co-hosting the event including: Reps. Sandy Adams, Fla., Judy Biggert, Ill., Diane Black, Tenn., Marsha Blackburn, Tenn., and Jo Ann Emerson, Miss.

The desired dress code advised on the invitation is “summer chic” and party goers are asked to wear white. According to Party Time sources, individual tickets cost about $100, but sponsorship level tickets will definitely cost more. To become a member of RightNOW!, all one would have to do is purchase two party tickets.

So ladies, grab your favorite little white dress and some heels (or flats) and prepare to party hard with the Republican women and female lawmakers.


This Week’s Fundraisers: Ballin’ with Obama, Romney, Ryan fundraisers and more

Updated 8/21

It’s going to be another slow week as we lead up to the Republican National Convention, Party Timers, with just over 20  events in the database. But the presidential tickets are busy. Here are the highlights:

Ballin’ with Obama: Two of the president’s campaign committees are holding eight events between them this week, both of them playing up on Obama’s known love for the sport and offering sponsors the chance to shoot hoops or meet some of basketball’s greatest stars.

Obama for America starts of the week with a grassroots fundraiser on Tuesday at a private home in California. The event, which will feature “wine, food, poetry and conversation” encourages contributions of any amount, but for a chance to enjoy the entertainment offered, donors have to contribute at least $100.

The next day, the Obama Victory Fund will take over, hosting an all-star dinner with the president himself in New York city. Some of the NBA’s and WNBA’s finest, such as Chris Bosh, Vince Carter, Dawn Staley and Sheryl Swoopes are expected to attend. Michael Jordan, famed as the greatest player of all time, will be co-hosting. Tickets for a photo reception and dinner with the president and the all-stars will cost $20,000 per person.

In a sweepstakes event, Obama for America offered one lucky winner (and guest) a chance to shoot hoops with some of the same stars from the all-star dinner (including Michael Jordan) and the president. The campaign gave entrants a choice to donate $15 to $1,000 although, the fine print reads that no such contribution is necessary to enter the event. Other than shooting hoops, the grand prize includes a round-trip ticket, hotel accommodations, and tickets to another event with the president. The approximate retail value of the prize is $3,200, according to the invite.

Also on Wednesday, Vice President Joe Biden will be partying on behalf of the president, attending a reception at the historic Hecker-Smiley mansion in Detroit. The event, hosted by the Obama Victory Fund will cost $5,000 for hosts and $2,500 for guests.

Continuing on the same day (it is a basketball-filled Wednesday for the Obama campaigns), the Obama Victory Fund, still in the Empire State, will host another basketball all-star event. There is no record of which all-stars will be attending this event but guests can get into an autograph session with the players for only $250. Two individuals who want to have a “Shoot-around skills session” with the players however will have to cough up $5,000.

On Thursday, Michelle Obama will headline an Indianapolis fundraiser. This is a resked of an event that was postponed from last month after the mass shooting in Aurora, Colo. The same day,  the Obama Victory Fund will be taking it overseas to Sweden for a reception with Obama’s National Finance Chair (and former Ambassador to Sweden), Matthew Barzum. Individual tickets cost $250 while couples get in for $450. Ex-pats should remember that only citizens may contribute to campaigns so passports should be at the ready.

Back in the homeland, on Friday, Lawyers for Obama as well as the LGBT Leadership Council will be hosting a morning reception for the Obama Victory Fund. Tickets range from $50 to $2,500. Attorney Robert Bauer, who has served as Obama’s White House counsel and Brian Bond, deputy director of the White House Office of Public Engagement are listed as special guests.

The nation’s veep will finish off the week in Bridgehampton, N.Y., at yet another reception at a private home. Rep. Timothy Bishop, D-N.Y. and Sens. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J. and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., are expected to attend the event as well. Tickets start at $500 for young professionals while co-hosts have to dole out $10,000. For an extra $1,000 contribution, a limited edition print by Mary Heilmann will be awarded, according to the Obama webpage.

Romney hits the money trail: The GOP nominee to be will be spending the week ahead of his party’s presidential convention trolling for more cash. News reports have him passing the hat on:

We have uncovered two of the invites for Romney’s Texas events. He starts off with a Tuesday luncheon, featuring Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, at the Houstonian Hotel in Houston. Attendees have the option to raise $150,000 to host or raise or contribute $50,000 to attend.

Romney will then be in Midland for an evening reception and dinner later in the day. Former Secretary of Commerce Donald Evans and Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas., are expected to attend the event, among other hosts. Dining with the nominee comes at the hefty price of $50,000 per couple. Couples could also opt to raise $200,000 for Romney Victory, Inc. instead. Tickets for a photo-op and private reception cost couples $10,000 or $25,000 if they opt to raise. The general reception costs a mere $2,500 per head.

The next day, Romney will be in Little Rock for another evening reception. Couples wanting to go to the chairman’s reception will have to either raise or contribute $25,000, while the photo reception comes at $10,000 in either donations or bundles. The general reception will cost individuals $2,500. Attendees will also have the chance to become a part of the Romney Victory Founding Membership for $50,000 per person, or they can raise $50,000 to attend a private dinner with Romney.

There are also reports that Romney will be hitting Louisiana this week. Got the invite? You know what to do.

New veep pick’s cross-country fundraisers: Romney’s chosen running mate, Wisconsin representative, Paul Ryan, will be fundraising on behalf of the Romney Victory, Inc. this week. Party Time does not have very many details about these events (such as the cost and who might be attending) however Ryan is slated to be attending:

Other events: The National Republican Senatorial Committee will be holding a summer cookout at its headquarters on Wednesday. Tickets cost $1,000 per PAC or $100 per person.

Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H. is inviting her supporters to Orlando, Fla., for a Universal Studios weekend. Party Time does not have much details about the event, but if you would like a change of scenery be prepared to contribute $1,500 per person or $2,500 per PAC.


This Week’s Fundraisers: Obama Cashing in with Celebrities, Romney in Alabama and more

It’s looks like a slow mid-August week, Party Timers, with a fewer than 15 events in our admittedly Beltway-centric database. Remember that the nation’s lawmakers are officially on their month-long holiday so parties may be slow for a while. However, if you know of any interesting fundraisers — especially those coming up in Tampa and Charlotte — be sure to fill us in!

On to the highlights:

Obama Cashing in with Celebrities: It’s not slow for President Obama’s campaign. Along with the usual campaign fundraisers there will be a (belated) birthday celebration in Chicago and some hob-nobbing with celebrities.

The president and his wife will kick off the fundraising week Sunday in different cities: Michelle Obama will be in Los Angeles for a party at a reception in her husband’s honor at a private home. That event will cost between $2,500 and $25,000.

Mrs. Obama then will head to the Beverly Hills home of singer and fashion designer Gwen Stefani for a ‘Sunday of Fun‘ with members of the American rock band No Doubt. To co-chair the event with the celebrities and Mrs. O, individuals have to dole out $25,000. A family photo opportunity comes at a hefty $8,000 while a couple photo-op costs $5,000. General admission for a family of four (that is, two adults and two children) will cost $1,000.

While his wife is in the Golden State, the president will be in his hometown of Chicago for a four-fundraiser day, including an exclusive party at his home for a few close friends able to pony up $40,000 a ticket and a Gen44 birthday celebration. To play on the president’s 51 years, VIP admission will cost $551 (this includes the VIP reception and ropeline placement), preferred admission $251, while general admission will be $51.

Later in the week, on Wednesday the Obama campaign will be hosting a reception with the cast of The Wire, an American TV drama. The event, which will be held at Martha’s Vineyard, will cost hosts $2,500 and guests $500. The campaign won’t be quick to leave the Vineyard however. On Friday they will have yet another fundraiser, a dinner, in the area. This one logs in at at $10,000 per couple or $5,000 per individual.

Romney in Alabama: GOP nominee, Mitt Romney will be in Birmingham, Ala. on Wednesday for a reception. Party Time does not have many details for this event, but it will reportedly cost between $5,000 to $25,000.

Update 08/13, 1:15 EST; Romney will also be in Nantucket on Saturday for a reception and dinner at a private home. Party Time doesn’t have any record for the ask of this event or who else will be in attendance.

Other Interesting Events: For those who are interested in getting out of the capital and heading for a different climate in Colorado, Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kansas, will be hosting a Broadmoor summer retreat to benefit the Free State PAC. Sens. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., John Thune, R-S.D. and Rep. John Boozman, R-Ariz. are all expected to attend the retreat which starts on Sunday and goes until Tuesday. Party Time has no record of the ask for this event.

Fishing fans may be interested in the annual “Hook ‘n Bullet” event for Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho. The two-day event starts on Tuesday on the Silver Springs Angus Ranch in Picabo, Idaho. Again, we are not sure of the ask for this event.


This Week’s Fundraisers: Presidential Partying, Abortion Rights Fundraising and more

It is officially August Party Timers! Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives have taken their month-long leave from the capital, so the partying pace has slowed to a crawl. If you know of events beyond the Beltway, let us know. Here are the highlights:

Presidential Partying: The Obama Victory Fund has three fundraisers lined up this week, starting with the president himself visiting Connecticut on Monday. There’s an evening reception at the Stamford Marriott Hotel, there general admission costs $500 and a photo opportunity with Obama runs $10,000. For $38,500, Nutmeg State supporters of the president can join him at a glam funder in nearby Greenwich. Hosts are media mogul Harvey Weinstein and Vogue editor Anna Wintour. Both Wintour and Weinstein have hosted fundraisers for Obama before.

Later the same day, the campaign turns to the West Coast with another reception, this one including a performance by world-renowned cellist, Yo-Yo Ma. The Santa Monica event will cost $10,000 per couple to co-chair, and $2,500 for general admission.

First lady Michelle Obama will then take the fundraising reins, heading to Wyoming for a Saturday luncheon in her husband’s honor. The title of “founding families,” which comes at a price of $35,800 per family, includes a reception, photo opportunity and the luncheon. Co-hosts are asked to pay $20,000 for a greet, photo opportunity and the luncheon. For just the photo opportunity and the luncheon, $2,500 is required. A luncheon attendee (or sponsor) gets in with a mere $100.

The Romney campaign will be doing a little touring of its own this week. GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney will be in West Des Moines, Iowa on Tuesday for a fundraising dinner. Two big name state Republicans, Sen. Chuck Grassley and Gov. Terry Branstad, are expected to attend. The event starts off at a price of $1,250 per head and photo opportunities cost $10,000. “Silver” hosts and “Gold” hosts are asked to contribute $10,000 or $25,000 respectively. Co-chairs have to dole out a whopping $75,000.

On Wednesday, Romney will hand over fundraising duties to his brother, Scott Romney (who is also his senior campaign advisor) and Matt Hoffmann, (his senior healthcare policy advisor). Both men will be present at an early morning “small business and healthcare policy roundtable” in Wisconsin. The title of event chair carries a price tag of $5,000. Hosts have the option of either contributing $2,500 or bundling $10,000 for the Romney campaign. Those who wish to skip the private meeting can attend the breakfast roundtable for $1,000.

“Pro-choice,” pro-fundraising: Two abortion rights organizations, the NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado PAC and the Voices for Choice are holding a brunch in Denver on Sunday. Ticket prices are $100 for hosts and $50 for guests. Donations will be evenly split between both groups.

Other interesting events and getaways: Those who wish to vacation with Congress can get a bright and early start. Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Mich., will be the honoree at his Great Lakes golf outing, which takes place from Sunday to Tuesday. Attendees will be visiting multiple clubs across Michigan. Hosts pay $5,000 (includes 2 golfers), while participants pay $2,500.

Other options include Sen. John Barrasso’s “summer Teton tee-off and wine and art escape.” The Monday event benefits the Wyoming Republican’s leadership PAC, Common Values. Party Time doesn’t know the ask for this event, but if you do, please tell the class..

Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., will also be making the best of summer in the Tetons, holding his “annual day in the Tetons” event on Thursday. This event also to benefit his own leadership PAC, Making Business Excel. The ask is $2,500.

Golfers have another chance to tee off while supporting Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D. The lawmaker will be having his 3rd annual golf weekend in Park City, Utah from Friday to Saturday. The first package which costs $3,000 per PAC and $1,500 per individual includes golf for both Friday and Saturday, while the second package ($2,000 PAC or $1,000 individual) includes only Saturday golf.

Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, will be the special guest at a Thursday reception honoring Rep. Judy Biggert, R-Ill. Tickets range from $2,500 to $75.

One of Romney’s potential veep pics (and leading Republican party boy), Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J. will be headlining a Montana fundraiser for ex-Rep. Rick Hill, who is a Republican candidate for governor this year. This event costs between $150 (for individual tickets) to $1,000 (for a couple photo and 2 reception tickets).

2012 Elections • POSTED - 08.03.12 BY Lindsay Young

Christie and Boehner headlining NRCC fundraiser

Though he’s denying any interest in a spot on the national ticket, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is taking a leading role in raising funds this fall for the Republican Party.

The outspoken Christie, often mentioned as a potential vice presidential running mate for Mitt Romney, will headline “2012 Battle Ground Fall Event” on Sept. 21 for the National Republican Congressional Committee, along with House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.

The event will be held in Washington at the Capitol Hill Club, a popular venue for congressional fundraisers, especially with Republicans. The first part of the event will be reviewing the presidential race, then a national election review. The event finishes with Christie’s keynote luncheon.

The RNCC is asking for contributions ranging from $1,000 to $38,500. Donors at the upper level get access to a number of events, including a “private dinner reception with members of Congress.”

Christie has become a popular Republican fundraiser. He will be featured at a fundraiser supporting Montana gubernatorial candidate, Rick Hill on August 10.

In June, Christie hosted a reception and dinner with Romney. Attending the Romney Victory Fund event cost up to $50,000 for the Founders Dinner.


This Week’s Fundraisers: Romney going International, the Obamas in the East and other interesting tidbits

July is winding down and we are moving slowly into the August (and convention) fundraisers, Party Timers! This transitional week brings us more than 20 events before both the Senate and the House of Representatives take a month long leave from the capital. The highlights:

Romney International: After GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s stint in the United Kingdom, he will be flying to Israel for a fundraising event in his honor, according to The Jerusalem Post. The Jerusalem fundraiser, which reportedly will cost $60,000 or more per plate, will take place on Sunday as the Jewish fast Tisha B’Av ends. The fast, which celebrates certain communal tragedies, takes place this year at sunset on July 28 and ends at nightfall on July 29.

After Jerusalem, Romney stops in Poland (where, as far as Party Time knows, he’s got no fundraisers). The GOP candidate’s next shaking of the money tree will take place Friday at a fundraiser in Idaho. The Sun Valley reception will cost about $1,000 per person.

The next day, Romney will be going cross country to Indiana for another reception featuring celebrity guests, actress and model Bo Derek and  actor and film director, Ricky Schroder. Several other hosts and congressmen are expected to attend the event as well. Party Time doesn’t have the ask for this event. (If you do, let us know!)

The Obamas on the East Coast: Both President Barack Obama and the first lady will be spending some quality time on the East Coast throughout the week.

The president will be in the Empire State on Monday evening for a dinner at the NoMad hotel. Those wishing to dine with Obama will have to pay $40,000 per head (or $80,000 per couple).

From then on the first lady will be picking up the Obama Victory Fund’s torch, starting with a Thursday luncheon at the private home of some big donors in New Hampshire. To qualify as an “event host,” guests must pay $10,000 per couple or $5,000 per individual. That includes a photo opportunity with Michelle Obama and a private pre-lunch reception. For $5,000 per couple or $2,500 per individual, sponsors will also get a photo op included with the regular lunch tickets.

The next day, the first lady will be heading over to Massachusetts for two events. At 12:30 p.m. she will attend another luncheon in Springfield at the Basketball Hall of Fame. Tickets range from $10,000 to $1,000.

A few hours later and some 50 miles away, Mrs. Obama will be at a reception in Pittsfield with singer-songwriter and guitarist, James Taylor. Once again, tickets to this event start at $10,000 but this time cost as little as $250 for general seating (although these tickets are of limited availability.) There were cheaper tickets for $125, but according to the site, these have already been sold out.

Also on Friday, the president’s right hand man, Vice President Joe Biden, will be in Los Angeles for a fundraising reception at the home of big Democratic donor Shoukat Hussain Ali, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The Reporter says tickets are $10,000 per head.

Other Interesting Events: We have a few “out of the norm” events this week, for those who don’t quite fancy the normal political fundraising scene.

Texas’ Republican Candidate for Senate, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst will holding a fundraising luncheon for his campaign on MOnday. The event, which will take place at San Antonio’s Club Giraud, will boast Gov. Rick Perry as the guest of honor. For a mere $25,000 donors can become a part of the “Dewhurst Senatorial Council Member,” while being a host or a sponsor costs $2,500 and $1,000 respectively.

On Wednesday, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., will be having a summertime reception featuring authentic Korean barbecue cuisine. Those who are interested in trying out a different type of barbecue should have between $2,500 and $1,000 ready to contribute to the congressman’s campaign.

Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Ill., will be having his own reception on Thursday, featuring Washington, D.C.-based band the 19th Street Band. Hosts are asked to contribute $2,500 while guests get to sit with the congressman and listen to the eclectic tones of the country Celtic musicians.

For the Party Timers that just have to get away, Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., invites his supporters “for a weekend of hiking, brewery tours, golf and more” at the Woodstock Inn and Resort in his home state from Friday to Sunday. Attendees wishing to attend the “Summer in Vermont” fundraiser will have to plunk down between $5,000 and $2,000.

Former President Bill Clinton will be the keynote speaker at the Humphrey-Mondale dinner honoring former Vice President Walter Mondale. The Saturday event, which will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minnesota costs between $5,000 and $125. Donations benefit the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party.

There will be another annual dinner, the Jefferson-Jackson dinner, held in New Orleans that same day. The ticket asks for the evening event range from $150 for individuals to $5,000 for a platinum 10-person table. Among the keynote speakers: Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, N.J. and Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland, the head of the Democratic Governor’s Association. O’Malley set up a federal PAC last week, setting off speculation that he’s preparing to run for the presidency in 2016.

Tampa- or Charlotte-bound? Party Time is trolling shamelessly for invites. You know where to send them.

2012 Elections 2012 Presidential Race Uncategorized • POSTED - 07.23.12 BY Lindsay Young

Obama features “The Wire” cast at fundraiser

The Obama campaign’s celebrity fundraisers never cease to amaze: On Aug. 15, in Martha’s Vineyard, the cast of the gritty TV series, “The Wire” will be in attendance at one of them, according to a invitation obtained by Party Time.

The event will be held at the home of Judy and Ron Davenport. There are few clues as to which of the numerous actors on “The Wire” will be in attendance.

The cost of the event ranges form $500 to $2,500 a person. While President Obama is on record stating The Wire is his favorite TV show, he is not scheduled to be at the event.

Though not as high-profile as the George Clooney Fundraiser in Switzerland, the event has tremendous appeal to the HBO aficionado.


This Week’s Fundraisers: Romney and Obama toe to toe, plus the getaways

It’s going to be busy on the party circuit this week with more than 40 events on our calendar. Events include a fundraising showdown between the presidential campaigns — including a near miss in California, where both presidential rivals will be on Monday — a few chill events and getaways, in addition to the usual breakfasts, lunches, receptions etc. The highlights:

Romney racing ahead: It seems as if GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney is keen to keep his fundraising lead, which culminated in him outraising President Barack Obama by almost $100 million in June. The Romney campaign will host six events (of which we know, at least) over the course of the week, starting with three on Sunday.

The day of not-so-much rest begins at the Woodside, Calif., home of billionaire business executive Thomas Siebel with a lunch in Romney’s honor. The ask for this event is reportedly $50,000 per head. Expected to attend: George Schultz, who served as secretary of state under former President Ronald Reagan, and who endorsed Romney upon his nomination.

A few hours later, Romney will head over to the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco for another fundraising gathering. Ticket prices range between $2,500 and $10,000.

The presidential hopeful will then hop over to Pacific Heights for an “intimate” dinner at a private home. This event also brings a whopping $50,000 per head to the candidate’s campaign. The  dinner will also feature Howard Leach, who served as ambassador to France under former President George W. Bush.

The next day, still wooing supporters in the Golden State, Romney will be having a breakfast in Irvine. Attendees have the option of giving (or bundling) $50,000 for two tickets to the host committee reception, two tickets to the photo reception with one photo-op and a table of 10 for breakfast. Giving $10,000 gets an individual two tickets to the photo reception with one photo op and two tickets to breakfast. Preferred seating costs $2,500 while $1,000 per head gets a person into the breakfast.

After taking a short break, (or maybe just organizing for the flight), Romney will be courting expats at a London reception on Thursday. The presidential hopeful is heading across the pond to cheer on wife Ann’s horse in the Olympics. But he’s not losing any money: Included among the event’s chairs is Barclays Capital Managing Director (and Romney bundler), Patrick Durkin. As usual, in order to contribute the requested $2,500, a U.S. passport (or copy) must be on hand.

A mere hour and a half after the reception Romney will be holding a private dinner. Durkin is also to be at this event, which ranges from $25,000 to $75,000 per person. Remember Romney 2012 expats, have your  passports (and cash) ever ready.

Obama hits for six as well: Update 7/23 EST 12:00 The Obama campaign won’t let itself easily fall behind Romney, however, giving tit for tat with six events lined up as well. Looks as if we spoke a little too soon, Obama is not just hitting for six, he’s hitting the ball way out of the park, outmatching Romney in fundraisers this week. In addition to the original six reported, Party Time discovered an additional five events for the Obama campaign.

The first lady kicks off the Obama campaign’s fundraisers with a reception in Indianapolis, Ind., at the Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday. Guests get in for $100, while the ropeline section (and presumably closer looks at Michelle Obama) costs $1,000. Hosts have to cough up $10,000 for the privilege of a family photo op and the reception. Update 7/21: The White House cancelled Sunday’s Indianapolis fundraiser after Friday’s massacre in Colorado.

On Monday, the president himself will travel to Piedmont, some 400 miles away from Romney’s own Irvine fundraiser, to woo his own supporters in California. The reception and dinner will be held at a private home and will cost $35,800 per person, to be divvied up between the Democratic National Committee, the Obama-Biden campaign, and state Democratic parties.

Mere minutes later the president is expected to head over to Oakland’s Fox Theater for another reception in his honor. Tickets for this event start at $100 for balcony seating and go up to $7,500 for event sponsors.

The next day, Obama will fly over to Portland, Ore., for a lunch reception at the Portland Art Museum. Ticket prices peak at $8,000 but start at $500. Half an hour before this lunch reception however, Obama will have a short brunch in the same location. Short as the event appears to be however, the president is holding up on his asks. Suggested contribution for the brunch is $30,000 per head, to benefit party committees in addition to the campaign.

At the exact same time as the earlier lunch reception, the Obama campaign will have another lunch reception (which Obama is also supposed to attend), a few minutes away from the art museum, at the Oregon Convention Center. General Admission for this event is $500.

While the nation’s chief is in Oregon, the campaign will be holding down the fort in Pittsburgh with a reception. The Tuesday event costs between $100 and $2,500. The Obama campaign will also be hosting a Vermont reception with former Gov. Madeleine Kunin at a private home. Tickets start at $50 for young professionals and students and go up to $1,000 for hosts.

Boston is not going to be left out in the Obama’s campaign Tuesday trail, where Obama for America Director of Opinion Research, David Simas, will be present at a reception and campaign update. Couples co-chairing have to dole out $3,500, while co-hosting couples only have to contribute $1,000. Individual sponsors should have $500 on hand and supporters get in for $250.

On Wednesday, the president will make an appearance in Louisiana for yet another reception in New Orleans. Entrance to reception and a photo op will cost attendees $5,000. VIP get in for $1,000, while a seat in preferred viewing comes at $500. General reception tickets cost $250 and students and young professionals get in for $100.

Vice President Joe Biden will also be campaigning on behalf of the president, courting supporters in the nation’s capital at a luncheon. The Friday event costs guests $2,500, with VIPs paying twice as much.

The Getaways: Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., will be hosting a Maryland golf weekend for his leadership PAC, LEG PAC from Friday to Sunday at the Inn at Perry Cabin and Harbourtowne Golf Course. Suggested contribution is $5,000.

For the baseball fans who wish to see the Cubs vs. Cardinals game and support Sen. Dan Coats, R-Ind., at the same time, this weekend is your chance. The senator will be hosting a “weekend in the Windy City with Cubs vs. Cardinals rooftop game” for $1,500 per individual from Friday to Sunday.

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This Week’s Fundraisers: Obama Campaign back in the fundraising business, Summer BBQs and Getaways

Another fairly busy week is upon us, Party Timers! We have almost 30 events lined up for you. The highlights:

Obama is back: After last week’s lack of (known) fundraisers, the Obama campaign is back on track with five events in the making.

On Tuesday, President Obama will be in San Antonio, Texas for a lunch with two members of prominent local Hispanic Democratic families, Rep. Charlie Gonzalez and Mayor Julian Castro (Castro’s identical twin brother, Joaquin, is running for the House seat that Gonzalez will be vacating when he retires at year’s end). Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria will also be a special guest at the event. Those wishing to rub shoulders with the politicians and actress only have to pay $250 for general admission. Closer glances of the foursome come at $1,000 for preferred seating, while individuals or couples can pay $5,000 or $7,500 respectively for the photo reception.

Later that same day, the president will travel to Austin for a reception with the LGBT Leadership Council with special musical guest, country singer, Jerry Jeff Walker. The LGBT event has the same ask as the earlier San Antonio lunch.

While Obama is courting supporters in the Lone Star State, his campaign will hold a food tasting reception hosted by Chefs for Obama back in the nation’s capital on Tuesday evening. Sponsors are asked to pay $1,000 for the VIP reception. For food-tasters, the price is $250.

First lady Michelle Obama will also be on the campaign trail this week, fundraising on her husband’s behalf in Alabama. The Wednesday reception, to be held at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel, has tickets tagged from $200 (for general admission) to $30,000 to co-chair (the hefty price gets you entrance into the greet, photo-op and five preferred viewing tickets).

The first lady will then be back in D.C. on Thursday for a campaign roundtable with the LGBT Leadership Council. The ask for this event is $10,000 per individual and $20,000 per couple.

Romney, Jindal and the big money: Multiple Louisiana media reports have Mitt Romney lunching Monday in Baton Rouge, La. with one of his potential VP picks, and and members of his Founders Club. Entrance fee: $50,000.

Update: 07/16/2012; 11:25 a.m. EST: The Romney campaign will also be in New York for a Wednesday luncheon with Ann Romney. The Women for Romney event features Republican National Committee Co-Chair, Sharon Day as a special guest. Tickets are priced at $2,500 for the photo and VIP reception, while entrance to the later general reception costs $500. Special thanks to the Bergen County Republican Organization for providing us with this invite!

Summer = B²Q: Tis the season to barbecue! Even our lawmakers know that much, trading in the normal receptions and luncheons with “ordinary” food for the treat.

On Wednesday, Alamo PAC, Sen. John Cornyn’s, R-Texas, leadership PAC will be the honoree at a Texas BBQ buffet luncheon. PAC Hosts are asked to contribute $2,500, while attendees pay $1,000 (PACs) or $500 (individuals).

On the same day, Sen. David Vitter, R-La., will be also hosting a D.C. BBQ at the National Republican Senatorial Committee headquarters. The ask is $1,000.

For those who may not be in the mood for barbecue (or are just plain sick of it) and want to try out something new, or for New Jerseyans missing the taste of home, Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., is having a taste of Paterson reception on Tuesday. So if you want to try something new (or something familiar if you hail from the Garden State), have $1,000 to $2,500 ready.

The Getaways: We have four getaways starting Friday to Sunday this week. Enjoy the (hopefully sunny but cool) weekend!

Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., will hold a Colorado Weekend for his leadership PAC, PEAK PAC. The event costs $5,000 for PACs and $2,500 for individuals.

On the other side of the map Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., will also host a weekend trip for his leadership PAC, Rhode Island Hope PAC. Two persons get to tag along if they cough up $5,000 between them.

Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, R, will be taking his backers to California for an annual Napa Valley wine tour. PAC hosts are asked to contribute $5,000 while PAC attendees are asked for $3,000. Individuals get the tour for $2,000.

Lastly, Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., will be venturing with his guests just next door to Maryland for his own weekend trip. PACs pay $5,000 while individuals get to attend for $2,500.


Beneficiary: congressional candidate, lawmaker, or entity which collects funds raised at party

Host: person who is hosting party-often, but not always, a registered federal lobbyist

Venue Name: where the party is

Entertainment Type: type of gathering, such as "breakfast," "ski trip," "bowling"

Other Lawmakers Mentioned: lawmakers mentioned on invitation who are used as a draw for the event

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